Vault Mosaics of the Kukeldash Madrasah, Bukhara, Uzbekistan
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The vault mosaics at the entrance of Kukeldash Madrasah in Bukhara (built in 1568–69) display three different geometric types, all of them with 8mm symmetry. Type 1 is the centrally-positioned Kond-style tiling, a combination of 10-, 12-, and 16-fold rosettes with pentagons and lozenges. Type 2 is a unique curvilinear pattern formed by irregular hexagonal tiles in non-linear hexagonal arrangement. Interpretation of this pattern as a net of intersecting geometric curves is made in the paper and its construction is discussed. Type 3 is represented by colourful non-linear mosaics based on combination of local centers with five and sixfold multiplicity, interpreted as the antithesis of the type 2 mosaic.
All images are by the author.
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